STUTTGART, Germany – U.S. European Command (USEUCOM) partnered with the United Kingdom and military personnel from 15 other North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) allies to execute Exercise Austere Challenge 2019 (AC19), March 13-22 at multiple locations across the USEUCOM area of operation.
Exercise AC19 is part of a series of training events that have been planned and executed since the 1990s intended to exercise combatant command coordination, command and control, and integration of capabilities and functions of the USEUCOM headquarters, its component commands, interagencies across the U.S. Government, and with NATO allies.
Training together enhances interoperability and increases the readiness and capabilities of USEUCOM forces as well as ally and partner forces.
“Exercises such as AC19 reaffirm the vital role allies, such as the U.K., play to ensure our collective security,” said U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. John Healy, Director of Exercises and Assessments, USEUCOM. “When we train together, we remain well-equipped to respond effectively to a dynamic security environment.”
Approximately 4,500 personnel participated in AC19, a U.S.-led, command post exercise designed to train multi-combatant command coordination in fictitious scenarios.
“It has been a real privilege for the UK to operate alongside the United States European Command on their premier war fighting exercise,” said Maj. Gen. Rupert Jones, the UK’s Standing Joint Force Commander. “We must always be ready to respond to crisis alongside our allies.”
AC19 contributes to USEUCOM’s commitment to strengthening strategic partnerships across Europe, including training with counterparts to enhance warfighting readiness.
The United States stands by its allies and partners, as they have stood by us. We will continue to take actions to increase the capability, readiness and responsiveness of NATO and partner forces to address any threat in deterring destabilizing activities.
U.S. European Command is one of two U.S. forward-deployed geographic combatant commands whose area of focus spans across Europe, portions of Asia and the Middle East, the Arctic and Atlantic oceans. The command is comprised of more than 60,000 military and civilian personnel and is responsible for U.S. defense operations, relations with NATO and 51 countries. For more information about U.S. European Command, visit http://www.eucom.mil/.